By News Team
Last Updated: 20th November 2020
We’re well over halfway through the NFL season and the play-off picture is beginning to take shape.
We’ve already seen the Seattle Seahawks bounce back from a disappointing performance against the Los Angeles Rams last week to take down the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday Night Football and there are plenty more enticing fixtures to look forward to this weekend.
Below we preview some of the best fixtures from this weekend’s NFL action, alongside our ambassador Jason Bell.
Tennessee Titans @ Baltimore Ravens
Two sides with identical records take each other on inside the M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday, with both looking to kick-start their seasons. This is a rematch of last year’s divisional showdown, in which the Tennessee Titans emerged victorious, and both began this season well too. But the Baltimore Ravens have lost two of their last three and the visitors have lost three of their last four, so both franchises are in desperate need of a confidence-building win here.
The Ravens, the 5/12 favourites, were well below par against the New England Patriots on Sunday Night Football and Lamar Jackson isn’t operating at anywhere near the level which earned him the MVP award last season. Homefield advantage is obviously a bonus, but the Titans know this is a low in confidence Ravens team and with Derrick Henry still a serious weapon on the ground, they might fancy their chances of a road win at 2/1.
Tennessee are 6-1 against the spread in their last seven away trips against opponents with winning records and so taking them with a five-point headstart at 10/11 could be a wise move, particularly with the Ravens 2-5 against the spread in their last seven NFL games.
Green Bay Packers @ Indianapolis Colts
This could be a cracker with two of the game’s great quarterbacks squaring off as Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers head to Indianapolis to take on Philip Rivers. The Colts (10/13) are in good form, winning six of their last eight. Their two defeats came at the hands of the Cleveland Browns and Ravens – two sides that were able to dominate the Colts’ offensive line and put pressure on Rivers – something the Packers will struggle to do.
In those six victories, Indianapolis have looked a proper side – one with serious play-off aspirations – and with a number of key players fit again or close to fitness, you feel this is a side that could make big waves this year.
The Packers (11/10) might be 7-2, but they don’t come across as a side playing that well with the majority of their wins coming against weaker sides in the league. The two times they’ve played better teams in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Minnesota Vikings they’ve lost comprehensively, and they might face a similar fate on Sunday.
Kansas City Chiefs @ Las Vegas Raiders
Another contest that could be fascinating is the Kansas City Chiefs’ trip to the Las Vegas Raiders. The last time these two met, the Raiders were surprise 40-32 victors – the only loss Kansas City have suffered so far this year. Not many looked at the Raiders as contenders, but they’ve developed in an impressive unit in recent weeks with four wins in their last five matches.
Josh Jacobs and Devontae Booker contributed for a total of four touchdowns between them last week, and the duo have formed quite the partnership. Derek Carr has really stepped up and is slowly beginning to deliver on the potential that many saw a few seasons ago. His numbers might not set the world alight, but he’s thrown just two interceptions all season and is very much taking his side in the right direction. Carr’s side are 61/20 for victory here.
Kansas City continue to impress and likewise Patrick Mahomes continues to show why he’s the league’s top quarterback. As mentioned, they’ve lost only once this term to Sunday night’s hosts and they’ll be keen to right that wrong here. Unsurprisingly the Chiefs are the strong 10/37 favourites for this one, and that’s very much the way it should be, however we saw what the Raiders can do in the sides’ last meeting and so an eight-point head-start in their favour at 10/11 might be a shrewd play.